Polestar boss favours character over range for electric cars

Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath says he would trade away some of an electric car’s efficiency and range to ensure it has a unique visual identity.

In a keynote speech at the Financial Times Future of the Car Conference in London, he asked: “Do we all have to be the weltmeister [champion] of efficiency? Do we all have to strive for the longest and the best range?

“I think, to a certain degree, for a certain character of the car, you might actually give [away] that one or two kilometres of range in order to give you a brand identity.

“If you ask me personally, at Polestar, I would definitely, for some kind of quality in the character of the car, give away a certain percentage of efficiency.

“But, of course, it has to be a reasonable amount. I think our customers would appreciate that as well.”

The approach is exemplified by the upcoming Polestar 6, a two-seat roadster positioned as the brand’s halo car – a model that Ingenlath previously said it would be “irresponsible” not to produce following the reception to it in O2 concept car form.

He also defended the absence of a rear window in the upcoming Polestar 4. The electric crossover instead features a flat rear deck and a roof-mounted rear-view camera, intended to enhance both crash safety and visibility – a “brilliant new idea”, according to Ingenlath.

He said: “Why can’t we not just simply look at that innovation and feel like ‘oh, wow, what’s that?’. No, this is immediately [controversial].

“It’s not at all a ‘designer thing’ where we said ‘Ah, let’s make the car look fancy, different’ and for that reason we did it.

“It’s a simple innovation and technology question. For how many years have we been fighting with the two different tendencies [visibility and safety] that we try to bring together?

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